As the founder of Behind The Speakers, I hear from home studio owners around the world every day. Many of them are super-talented musicians, producers, and engineers. On social media, they’re always posting their success stories — the play counts on their latest singles, pictures with fans who came to their shows.
If you scrolled through their Facebook pages alone, you’d think they have it all together. But I know the truth, and it's usually a different story...
Because when these home studio owners reach out to me, they’re almost always asking for help.
They’ve been staring at their DAWs all day, aimlessly toiling away on a mix.
They’ve tried it all — tips and tricks from YouTube, the plugins they bought from the latest Waves sale. But they just can’t seem to give their tracks the shine and polish the professional recordings have.
They’ve been at it for hours, flipping back and forth between their mix and their favorite songs on Spotify. The other tracks sound clear, punchy, and three-dimensional. But their mix sounds muddy and thin, and they have no idea why.
By the time I hear from them, they’ve usually been struggling with the same mix for weeks. And after working for so long without making progress, many of them get frustrated and give up. Their track had potential, but they just couldn’t see it through. So their “final” mix rests on their hard drive, collecting digital dust among a graveyard of abandoned tracks.
Sound familiar? I should know.
When I first started recording my own music, I hated mixing. After struggling with the process for years, I’d collected hundreds of tips and tricks that promised to solve my problems. I’d invested thousands in gear and third-party plugins that claimed to add vibe and character to my tracks. But my mixes still didn’t hold a candle to my favorite records. I was frustrated, overwhelmed, and confused.
Little did I know that a few years later, I’d be mixing singles by artists signed to Hollywood Records, Glassnote, and Ultra Music. My mixes would be streamed millions of times and played on radio stations around the world. I'd even get to meet Rihanna. And I’d finally achieve my dream of making music that sounded just like the records I loved.
There was a time when I wondered if it was possible to make mixes that sounded professional at home. Here’s what I know to be true today...
It’s absolutely possible for you make music that sounds radio-ready in a home studio. And you don’t need fancy outboard gear, lots of third-party plugins, or a million-dollar analog console to do it. Case in point? My “studio” is a laptop with a $160 audio interface in the spare bedroom of my apartment. In 2016, I mixed “Wiser” by Madilyn Bailey here. The song currently has over six million plays on YouTube.
Mixing might feel frustrating and overwhelming today, but it CAN become an effortless extension of your creative process. So you can pull up your DAW, let go of the stresses of your job and daily life, and get lost in the flow of making music whenever you want.
And finally, you CAN make music that moves and inspires listeners around the world. Your tracks can make people feel something — joy, sadness, or a sense of connection that comes from knowing they’re not alone. Through your music, you CAN make a profound impact on the world. And learning how to mix like a pro will help you get there.
So the real question is...
Why aren’t you there yet?
After speaking with thousands of home studio owners, I’ve discovered there are three things holding most people back from making pro mixes. If you’re struggling with the mixing process, chances are one of these things is getting in the way…